\ ˈspek How to pronounce speck (audio) \

Definition of speck

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a small discoloration or spot especially from stain or decay
2 : a very small amount : bit
3 : something marked or marred with specks


specked; specking; specks

Definition of speck (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to produce specks on or in

Other Words from speck


specked \ ˈspekt How to pronounce speck (audio) \ adjective

Examples of speck in a Sentence

Noun There was not a speck of dust anywhere. Soon the balloon was only a speck in the sky. She writes without a speck of humor. Verb dirt that had specked the windows of the factory for ages
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Without trees, my sense of distance crumples, and soon, the rental car has shrunk to a blue speck. Julia Rosen, The Atlantic, 25 July 2022 Patterson offers a few recommendations to aspiring writers: pare off every speck of fat and keep things moving along—fairly basic action-writing advice. Laura Miller, The New Yorker, 13 June 2022 Both candidates are ramping up efforts to attract voters in Broward, a reliably blue speck of Florida. Natalia Galicza, Sun Sentinel, 8 July 2022 Thomas was born on Christmas Day, 1987, in Montrose, Ga., a speck of a town between Macon and Savannah. New York Times, 5 July 2022 Our experts were blown away by the laser beam on the bare-floor brush that made every last speck of dust and hair visible in this Dyson's path. Carolyn Forté, Good Housekeeping, 8 July 2022 The Mona Lisa was only slightly damaged; the rock chipped off a tiny speck of paint, but restorers were able to quickly make the repair. Catherine Garcia, The Week, 6 June 2022 In fact, the pores in the cell membrane get so large that the speck conformation of the adapter protein can leave as well, along with other key particles necessary for cell survival. William A. Haseltine, Forbes, 1 July 2022 The Left Fork Fire is but a speck among them, yet its resilience may bode ill for a country under multiple red flag warnings and facing historic heat before the meteorological summer. Dennis Romero, NBC News, 20 June 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The 656-foot vessel, called the Golden Ray, has been lying since early September off a slice of the Georgia coast specked with resorts and sprawling high-dollar homes. New York Times, 16 Nov. 2019 Now, their territory has fewer than 1,000 residents and consists of about 7,300 acres, with roads wandering through woods specked with modest family homes. New York Times, 22 June 2018 For all its strengths, though, the series proves a bit of a slog, at times, as the wheels turn along the dusty, blood-specked road to wherever this maze leads. Brian Lowry, CNN, 19 Apr. 2018 To get into the spirit, order a ginger beer and rock shrimp fritters, fried balls of doughy goodness specked with bell pepper and spices that come steaming hot with a side of spicy mayo. Mark Kurlyandchik, Detroit Free Press, 12 Feb. 2018 Moonchild is specked with obvious glitter, which could be a deterrent for some. Devon Abelman, Allure, 15 Sep. 2017 The majority of it, however, was specked with red SALE signs, noting that the red, white, and blue a-line miniskirt was 40 percent off (from $80 to $53.40) and white sculpting mid-rise skinny jeans (from $89 to $36.60). Emily Jane Fox, vanityfair.com, 10 Aug. 2017 The majority of it, however, was specked with red SALE signs, noting that the red, white, and blue a-line miniskirt was 40 percent off (from $80 to $53.40) and white sculpting mid-rise skinny jeans (from $89 to $36.60). Emily Jane Fox, The Hive, 10 Aug. 2017 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'speck.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of speck


before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1


14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for speck


Middle English specke, from Old English specca

Learn More About speck

Time Traveler for speck

Time Traveler

The first known use of speck was before the 12th century

See more words from the same century

Dictionary Entries Near speck

specious present



See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for speck

Last Updated

10 Aug 2022

Cite this Entry

“Speck.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/speck. Accessed 18 Aug. 2022.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

More Definitions for speck


\ ˈspek How to pronounce speck (audio) \

Kids Definition of speck

1 : a small spot or blemish
2 : a very small amount : bit a speck of dirt

More from Merriam-Webster on speck

Nglish: Translation of speck for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of speck for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Odd Habits and Quirks

  • image1926873504
  • Which of the following best describes an easily irritated person?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

Universal Daily Crossword

A daily challenge for crossword fanatics.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!